George Washington Papers

To George Washington from Providence, R.I., Citizens, 10 June 1790

From Providence, R.I., Citizens

Providence June 10th 1790


From the change of Sentiment which has gradually taken place in the minds of the Good people of this State, and the Happy Effects of the General Government, which begins to Operate so favorably in the Union, under the Auspices of your Excellency’s administration—in Consequence of which the Convention of this State at their late Session were Induced to Adopt the Enlighten’d Policy of confirming and Ratifying the Constitution of the United States A Circumstance highly Important and Interesting to the peace and Happiness of the Nation—permit us therefore, Sir to Congratulat⟨e⟩ your Excellency on this pleasing occasion—in Consequence of our Accession to the Union a Number of Officers will Necessarily be Nominated and Appointed for the Collection of the Revenue within the State—as it will be your Excellency’s wish that those Appointments should devolve upon persons of Tried Abilities & Integrity, whose Services and Sacrifices during the late Revolution entitle them to your Excellencys Notice and the favors of their Country—we take the Liberty to Recommend the bearer Colo. Jeremiah Olney (who served with Reputation during the War and since which service he has uniformly Supported a fair Character) as a person worthy to be entrusted with the Office of Collector of Impost for the District of Providence1—in him your Excellency and the public will find a Vigilant, faithful Officer, a Good Citizen, a Friend to the Federal Constitution, and, on all occasions a firm Supporter of the principles of a Liberal, Enlighten’d and Just Policy. We have the Honor to be, with profound Defere⟨nce⟩ Your Excellency’s Most, Obed: Hble Servts

John Brown

Enos Hitchcock

Clark & Nightingale

Jos. & Wm Russell

LS, RHi: Jeremiah Olney Papers.

1For Olney’s application for the office of collector at Providence, see Olney to GW, 16 Mar. 1789. Olney vigorously pursued the appointment, renewing his application on 31 May and 4 June 1790 and seeking recommendations or assistance from Hamilton and others (see Olney to Hamilton, 7 June 1790, in Syrett, Hamilton Papers, description begins Harold C. Syrett et al., eds. The Papers of Alexander Hamilton. 27 vols. New York, 1961–87. description ends 6:458–59). Olney apparently brought the letter from the Providence citizens with him to New York to pursue the appointment in person. GW appointed him collector at Providence on 14 June (see GW to the U.S. Senate, 14 June 1790).

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